“Listen to the quiet. Can you hear it?”
As a child, I neither understood nor appreciated my grandfather’s (Opa) frequent exhortation during family visits to our cabin in the Wisconsin north woods. Listening to the quiet was a waste of time, especially when there was fun to be had.
Yet Opa’s words continued to echo as I grew, and I began to discover that God was at work in and through the quiet. It can be easier to see God in miracles, in thundering voice and pillar of cloud, in the shining light of transfiguration and the supernatural exodus of ascension. And to be sure, God is very much present and active in these moments. But Opa understood that God is also at work in the quiet, in the stillness and silence that we can all too easily pass over if we aren’t paying attention.
The quiet isn’t vacant, barren or desolate. Like the God who works in and through it, the quiet is vibrant, dynamic, and very much alive. All we need to do is listen.
This message is excerpted from “Listen to the quiet” by Hannah Hawkinson in the July 16, 2018, blog of the Women of the ELCA. Today is the Transfiguration of our Lord.
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